I managed to escape the worst of the rain on Saturday and on Sunday too for that matter. But it's falling again this morning and I'm wondering if my tennis match at lunchtime will be possible. It's on a hard court, so provided it's not flooded we might just make it.
We got our steps in over the weekend. A good walk around the village and then doing my pitch-side stuff at the rugby covered Saturday and tun on Sunday we had a walk through Purfleet for the RSPB place at Rainham Marshes. Apparently the marshes were the site of an ordinance store that was made to look like a lake to confuse enemy bombers. Or so I've ben told. It's now a wildlife centre that attracts birdwatchers and people like us who just like to walk by the river.
I've no idea how wide the river is at this point, but it's certainly wide enough to make even some rather large ships look quite average. Purfleet has quite a military heritage. In the 18th century the Royal Magazine was established there. Not a glossy journal, but a storage facility for gunpowder. A garrison was also located in Purfeet to protect the magazine. There's a small museum that we've yet to visit. It's also the home to the Royal Opera House's High House Production Centre where the community chorus performed Verdi's Requiem back in July. Significant because Anne was in the chorus!
Back at the visitor's centre we had hot chocolate before setting off to visit friends for the late afternoon. The centre gives you a great view of the marshes, surrounded as they are by the industrial sights and sounds of the area. In the not too far distance the high speed gains into Kent and the Eurostar rush by along with the more sedate suburban railway. Looking eastward there's the QE2 bridge and the west, on a good day, the buildings of Canary Wharf and beyond into the city are clearly visible. If you want to, you can walk to Rainham station along the riverside. There's even a short path that takes you over the edge of the reclaimed landfill site! We've hill-walked and Fell-walked but until recently we had never landfill hill crossed!